Novel Review | Limerence by Jiang Zi Bei

Title: Limerence


Pei Ran and Luo Qingshan have been together since , three years and counting. Luo Qingshan is extroverted and overly affectionate, while Pei Ran is the opposite, more shy and reserved, and has mysophobia, making him averse to most of Luo Qingshan's affections. This often leads to them disagreeing or Luo Qingshan pleading and begging Pei Ran to relent, but they are otherwise comfortable. However, Pei Ran will give in as much as possible when Luo Qingshan's birthday comes around.

As much as he hates it, he goes out to a karaoke place with Luo Qingshan, along with a group of his friends. Everyone is drinking and smoking, two things Pei Ran has trouble being around. Another person who happens to be there is Su Nian, Luo Qingshan's close friend, who is more forward and affectionate with Luo Qingshan than Pei Ran would like. After a lot of drinking, Luo Qingshan heads to the bathroom. After a while, Pei Ran checks on him, only to find him and Su Nian kissing outside the bathroom.

Stunned, Pei Ran isn't sure what to do until Luo Qingshan's roommate Yan Zhun comes by and gets Pei Ran out of there. Comforted by Yan Zhun, Pei Ran spares no time to gather all of Luo Qingshan's things and break up with him the next time they meet. Luo Qingshan isn't ready to give up just yet, going out of his way to get close to Pei Ran and beg for his forgiveness. Pei Ran holds firm, thanks in part to the friendship he's found in Yan Zhun, but it isn't long before Yan Zhun makes it clear: he likes Pei Ran more than a friend.

Fresh out of a painful breakup, with an ex still hot on his heels and a love rival in Su Nian who bad-mouthes him any chance he gets, can Pei Ran find it in himself to fall for someone else? Or has the well of love been poisoned for good?

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Novel Review | Until I Meet My Husband by Ryousuke Nanasaki

Title: Until I Meet My Husband


This is the story of . From the time he was small, he always knew he was different. Whether it was the way he spoke, the way he walked, or the things he enjoyed, he never could mesh with what the world expected him to be as a little boy. This only became all the more apparent when he began going to school and was incessantly bullied for being a “girly-boy.” Whether it was by adults or his peers, he was always treated as an “other” until he met Tsukasa. Of course, Tsukasa was Ryousuke's best friend, but more than that, he was his unrequited first love.

This starts a journey of self-acceptance, self-love, and the journey for true love for Ryousuke Nanasaki. Ryousuke has never been what the world perceived as normal, but that would never stop him. He wants true happiness with the one he loves and wants that for everyone, no matter who you choose to love.

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Novel Review | University of the Underworld by Ziloi

Title: University of the Underworld


Our main character is a new ghost. He doesn't remember how or when he died, nor does he remember who he even is, so he spends the first moments of his new ghostly life simply waiting when he wakes up. For what? For the ghostly guards, of course, that will help guide him to the underworld. No matter how long he waits, though, there is no sign of any guards of any kind to come and help. So, on a whim, the ghostling decides that if he isn't destined to go to the underworld, he'll become a malevolent spirit. Unfortunately, his first target is none other than Bai Shaonan, a ghost, and a powerful one at that.

The little ghostling's antics do not amuse Bai Shaonan, and he's compelled to destroy the new ghost and move along with his undead life. However, there is something about the little ghost that Shaonan just won't seem to let him do it, especially when he finds out the little guy wants to become a malevolent spirit and has no clue who he is. So, looking around, Shaonan picks a random name: Cui Yue. Then, he takes little Cui Yue under his wing and back to the underworld, specifically the university where Shaonan is actually a dean.

Cui Yue starts his life as an underworld student, but it's not all fun and games. Cui Yue isn't a very good student, but he's trying his best, and his grades are the least of his worries when he realizes that Shaonan's interest may not end at mere scholarly interest. But beyond school and romantic troubles, there is an underworld to the underworld that is working to destroy both Cui Yue and Bai Shaonan for eternity.

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Novel Review | Look at Me by Tansan

Title: Look at Me


Heerak is a well-known alpha. He's a successful restauranteur and social media influencer, which leaves him spoiled for choice when it comes to partners. However, one evening, he wakes from a drunken stupor to find himself in the throes of passion with a cute omega. Well, cute from what parts of him he can see. Before he can identify the anonymous bed-partner, he blacks out again. The following day, the omega of his dreams is nowhere to be found.

This sends Heerak on a search, which results in finding the omega, except he wasn't an omega at all. It turns out the person in question was Dooseon, a beta and one of Heerak's employees at his company. Wanting to avoid a scandal, Heerak goes into protection mode, offering to pay any price for Dooseon to keep quiet. However, to his surprise, Dooseon doesn't want anything. If anything, he got what he wanted out of the deal: a night with Heerak, for whom he always had some level of attraction.

Stunned by this revelation and by Dooseon's refusal of compensation, Heerak finds himself drawn to the beta. It is no longer a game of protecting his image or burying a scandal; instead, it's all about getting Dooseon to fall for Heerak. As Heerak does his best to shower Dooseon with time and affection, Dooseon struggles with this new suitor. Why does Heerak spend so much time on him? What could a dominant alpha get from a beta like him?

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Novel Review | Beast Blood by Sato Fumino

Title: Beast Blood



Euphemia Ashencourt is a pretty girl… and that's all anyone sees in her, which only puts her that much deeper in her half-sister's shadow. Her elder sister is none other than the mayor of Gothic City – a corrupt city overrun with Nightz addicts, gangs, and Beast Blood-hating groups murdering them whenever possible. But Euphemia's sister is slowly working on turning things around. Naturally, Euphemia wants nothing more than to help her sister make the city better and prove that she is more than just a pretty face. So, using her sister's connections, Euphemia gets a job at a research facility to find a way to naturally destroy the Night Bloom – the flower used to create Nightz.

Euphemia never thought that trying to help her sister destroy some flowers would ever lead her to danger. However, one evening, after seeing the Night Blooms bloom, she is captured by some gang members on her way home. They take her out to the Wilds with the intent to assault her before feeding her to a Muta – a monstrous and blood-thirsty creature. Before the men can touch her, she resolves to take her own life and control her death. But in the middle of her attempt, a man with glowing silver eyes appears.

His name is Zelaide, and he isn't just any man. He is Beast Blood, a species that looks human but is much more than that. He's stronger, he's faster, and he's more beast than man, and he's a Hunter – a contractor that does all the violent, dirty work that most humans can't or won't. He takes out the men, defeats the Muta, and saves Euphemia. That would typically be the end of Zelaide's involvement with a human woman, but the moment Euphemia laid eyes on him, she wanted him and wasn't going to let this beast of a man get away.

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Novel Review | Lip and Sword by Jin Shisi Chai

Title: Lip and Sword


Xing Ming is the host of Pearl Line, a news analysis show for the station Pearl TV Station News Center. He's attractive, talented, and truly cares about the news he puts out. As a result, during the end-of-the-year banquet for the station, Xing Ming is awarded the Top Ten News Centers of the Year award. However, not everyone feels he is deserving of it. Director Chen Linan, who actually recruited Xing Ming initially and put him in the position of hosting Pearl Line, now no longer feels he is worthy of his accolades or role on the show. This is all because Zhuang Lei, rumored to be Chen Linan's niece or lover, was the host of Pearl Line before she went on maternity leave, which allowed Xing Ming to be her replacement. Even though she has recovered and is ready to return, Xing Ming refuses to give up his spot.

Due to his frustration and drunkness, Chen Linan confronts Xing Ming at the party. At first, Xing Ming isn't worried over the drunken Chen Linan's pestering… until Chen Linan brings up Xing Ming's dead father, a convicted rapist. In a blind rage, Xing Ming beats Chen Linan over the head with a wine bottle in front of everyone at the party. In a panic, knowing his job is on the line, Xing Ming reaches out to the station chairman, Yu Zhongye, and offers himself up in exchange for leniency regarding his punishment. While Yu Zhongye does take him up on his offer, and they spend a night together, the director and chairman are set to fire him the following day. Once more, in a fit of rage, Xing Ming fights off the security guards and poses an offer to the chairman: let me create my own show with my own team from scratch. If he doesn't get decent ratings during a six-month period, he will leave on his own.

Yu Zhongye agrees, but as Xing Ming faces setback after setback, he constantly has to return to Yu Zhongye for favors. As he gives himself over to the chairman repeatedly, Xing Ming begins to question if this is all worth it and what his sexuality is. However, more than anything, Xing Ming wonders if what he feels for Yu Zhongye is truly admiration or if it is something deeper? And is Yu Zhongye capable of loving anyone for more than their body?

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Novel Review | Salad Days by Jing Shuibian

Title: Salad Days


Jiang Shen is a poor boy in a rural village. He spends his days playing with friends out in the rice paddy fields, helping his father work the fields, chasing wild chickens, and fishing. The most time he ever spends in the city is when his mother takes the vegetable harvest to sell. While his mother is busy in the city, Jiang Shen usually spends his time exploring the Children's Center, where he stumbles upon a ballet class. The teacher catches him looking and invites him in, where she discovers he may have an innate talent for ballet. It isn't long before Jiang Shen's focus goes from his idyllic village days to something much larger and grander.

On the other end of the spectrum is Bai Jinyi. He comes from a filthy rich family and wants for nothing. He spends his days training at the Children's Center in boxing, with his goal being to go international and win the gold belt. However, while attending training one day, an unusual sight catches his eye: a little boy among a gaggle of girls in a ballet class. Inexplicably, Bai Jinyi becomes drawn to this little boy, and for once in his life, Jiang Shen is the one thing he wants, even more than boxing.

They say the rich never box and the poor never dance. Yet, Jiang Shen and Bai Jinyi are set to defy those odds. As the two grow and change and their dreams grow more and more focused, the one thing that keeps them tethered together is their growing feelings for each other. So, can these happy days continue for two boys whose paths would never have crossed otherwise? And can they grasp their dreams while holding onto each other?

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Novel Review | Yes, No, or Maybe? by Michi Ichiho

Title: Yes, No, or Maybe?



Kunieda Kei lives two different lives. Externally, he is the prince of the evening news – hardworking, kind, and humble. He is the ideal man and is adored for it. Internally, though, he is a rude, conniving, and spiteful person. He plays both roles so effectively that even Kunieda isn't sure which is the real him. However, his worlds collide when he runs into Tsuzuki, an animator who specializes in stop motion. During his day job (which takes place in the evening most of the time since he works for the evening news), Kunieda has to interview Tsuzuki.

Tsuzuki is a chill guy and immediately rubs Kunieda the wrong way. Even so, Kunieda can't let it show, so he puts on the charm, and the interview goes well. After work, Kunieda becomes his other inner self. From the clean-cut, dapper Kunieda, he turns into the sweatsuit, mask, and glasses-wearing Kunieda, who eats junk food and curses like a sailor. Unfortunately, during his nightly ritual to go get junk food, Kunieda ends up causing a bicyclist to wreck. As it turns out, the rider is Tsuzuki. Kunieda does his best to escape, but Tsuzuki demands that Kunieda pay him back by helping him with his next animation. In order to avoid Tsuzuki discovering who he is, Kunieda goes by Owari.

As Kunieda spends more time with Tsuzuki as both straight-laced Kunieda and trouble-maker Owari, he grows closer to him. But could Tsuzuki accept both sides of Kunieda? Which even is the real Kunieda?

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Novel Review | The Missing Piece by Kun Yi Wei Lou

Title: The Missing Piece


Shen Mo is an art school graduate. Unfortunately, by the time he graduated and earned a job in his field, he was abducted, and as a result of the trauma from that incident, he was unable to use his right hand to paint. However, he thankfully escaped the incident with his life thanks to Ji Mingxuan. To pay back Mingxuan's help, Shen Mo is in a contracted relationship with him. All so that Mingxuan's younger sister can marry Zhou Yang, her childhood friend, and Shen Mo's ex, without worrying about Shen Mo and Zhou Yang getting back together. Three years passed as Shen Mo and Ji An'an, Mingxuan's sister, left to study abroad together.

Though it is a fake relationship, the lines between and reality begin to blur, especially when Zhou Yang and Mingxuan's sister come back from studying abroad together. Now, with Shen Mo right in front of him, Zhou Yang doesn't try to hide the fact that he is still attracted to Shen Mo, even as his engagement with An'an is publicly announced. While Shen Mo is still attracted to Zhou Yang, even if only due to the memories before his traumatic experience, he grows closer to An'an, and Mingxuan's affections become more and more real. Who and what Shen Mo wants for himself becomes more and more unclear. Will Shen Mo forsake Mingxuan and An'an to return to the familiar love he had with Zhou Yang, or will Shen Mo take the plunge and trade in his contractual relationship with Mingxuan for something real?

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